Different Factors That Contribute to the Growth and Failure of the Kenyan Film Industry in General

Topics: Film, Film director, Film production Pages: 5 (1395 words) Published: November 29, 2012

1) Introduction
The Film Industry is an important vehicle for social, cultural, political and economic development because a well nurtured film industry can be a major source of employment and an effective tool and platform for the cultured expression of the people. The industry can also promote a country’s potential as an investment and tourist destination and as an advocacy tool and shaper of opinion; film can in itself be used to effectively demystify cultural and ethnic differences by using it to promote integration and unity of people. Film is not only a tool for information and entertainment but also a powerful communications instrument for national integration, for social and economic development and for the exploitation, preservation and further enrichment of cultural heritage. By writing this paper I intent to find out the different factors that contribute to the growth and failure of the film industry in general. This in turn helps the current students learning film production and those already in the film business because they can improve or learn from the shortcomings of the current methods. The audience will also benefit from this because they get to appreciate what it entails to produce a film. (1.2) Background

The Kenyan film industry has improved drastically from the hay days of only using one editing suite for the whole country and not using top notch equipment. People have become creative and innovative with the development and advancement in technology. Although these benefits reside on our side, there are some challenges that decline the growth of film industry.

Capital and Finance:

In order to produce good quality films we need a large amount of capital for the production and marketing. Good quality films need a large amount of capital for production and marketing just like we observe from our Hollywood counterpart where millions of dollars are spent in production and marketing and this makes their films unbeatable with quality in the film market.

The production of a film requires lots of traveling, costume designing, hiring of affiliate partners like production houses among other expenses incurred during the whole production process. Before a movie appears on your screen or a cinema hall, it goes on a very long process which might take a period of more than one year, during this whole period the actors and actresses need to satisfy their daily needs and hence they are signed a contract in which they are paid. All these require a large amount of capital which is still a scarce in many Kenyan industries.

Limited creativity:

One important factor in finding Kenya’s film voice comes in the very first stages of a film: telling the story. Sitati (2008) explained that attention to cinematic storytelling is the key:That's been our biggest challenge here. We have excellent stories being told, but sitting and formulating a story and creatively bringing out the true aspect of what it is you want to bring out, that's what is lacking. We have excellent cameramen, but it's important to have a creative story. The few films that have been produced locally lack enough creativenesses in the storyline and the production itself. Creativity is a quality that makes a product distinguishable from others because of its uniqueness, and when it lacks, the whole project is incompetent.


Another challenge explored in this study focuses on what to do with a film once it has been completed. The market for African films is still a way too far from reaching a climax where it tops the film charts across the globe with Nigeria struggling. This makes the movies outdated before making a major sale in the market; sometimes the cost of production overtakes the amount of sale.

For a Kenyan film to find an audience, both within Kenya and without, it needs to be irresistibly good. This is an inevitable...
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